Anish Kapoor is my favorite artist for many reasons. One such reason is that he sculpts things out of unlikely materials and creates works of art that are complex yet deceivingly simple (or simple yet deceivingly complex). I think that he is outstanding for his ability to integrate architectural feats and engineering ideas into his art. His art speaks to me because it makes me interact with the sculpture and not just be a passive viewer. I also admire Anish Kapoor for being an Indian-born artist who has succeeded in ways that other living artists have not succeeded. For example, he is the only living artist to ever have an exhibition at the Royal Academy of Arts. The prestige that has been bestowed upon him is deserving because there is no other artist who has the imagination and the instinct to create sculptures that appear to defy space and time and that challenge the one thing that binds us all—gravity.
One of my absolute favorite pieces by Kapoor is the piece entitled, “Turning the World Upside Down.” The reason that this piece appeals to me is that it is simple to look at, but it produces effects that are anything but simple. Kapoor creates a huge sculpture of a mirror that is smooth and in the shape of an hourglass. When the viewer approaches the sculpture, the viewer is able to literally see their own reflection since the medium of the sculpture is a mirror. However, Kapoor makes a statement that one’s own reflection is not all that it seems because in the top half of the sculpture, one’s reflection is actually convoluted into an upside-down reflection. Therefore, this piece reaches out to the viewer and tricks the viewer into thinking they are looking at a simple reflection of themselves, but the viewer is then exposed to the reality that their own reflection is flipped upside down. To me, this piece of art causes the viewer to introspect upon their own perspectives and encourages the viewer to consider the lens through which life is perceived. This piece of art causes the viewer to reevaluate one’s perspective and consider the perspectives of others.
Another one of my favorite pieces is called “Descension” because Kapoor sculpts with what is essentially an un-sculptable material—water. This piece stimulates the viewer into becoming mesmerized by what is a never-ending vortex of water that is 26 feet wide. The water appears to be swirling into the center of the earth and it makes the viewer consider the power of water and the eternal motion that it possesses. This piece makes me think about my own mortality and cause me to consider the way that I live my life.
I think that Kapoor is an inspirational artist because of the way that he causes the viewers of his art to reevaluate their own lives, their own perspectives, and to consider the perspectives of others. The way that Kapoor uses materials that are natural in order to defy nature is also inspirational, to me. I know that Kapoor has a background in engineering, and I feel that he applies this background to his art in such a way that one cannot help but to become a better person for having viewed his art. I cannot think that there is any other artist who has the ability to create stimulating sculptures out of simple materials that cause the viewer to become a better person, and therefore, Kapoor is the artist who I consider to be the most inspirational and outstanding of all artists.